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About Us

  Ken Breivik discusses School Ministries and Released Time Education programs.
School Ministries, Inc. (SMI), is a nonprofit organization that was created in1991 to assist local communities in the creation of Released Time Bible Education (RTBE) programs click on Start a Program or to strengthen existing programs click on Become a Member.


Released Time programs are, in fact, the only legal means of devotionally teaching the Bible during the public school day. To be legal requires that there be parental consent, that the classes be held off the school campus and that no state dollars are used.

Although initially envisioned to have a South Carolina focus, SMI rapidly assumed a national role as it began responding to RTBE interests across the country. It offers training programs on how to operate RTBE programs legally. It works to raise national visibility and conducts RTBE research. Since 2001, SMI has experienced an 13% average annual growth rate in the number of students it serves.

SMIN-Photos 0000s 0003 iStock 000007744823MediumReleased Time Bible Education programs bring hope to youth, many of whom come from families who have no church involvement. Research has shown that the students who participate in RTBE perform better both academically and behaviorally. Opening these possibilities to public school students is just too important to their futures for RTBE not to be systematically promoted and advanced throughout all 50 states.

To accomplish this SMI is positioning itself as a truly national organization that supports state level networks and individual programs.

School Ministries is headquartered in Columbia, South Carolina.

As the culture becomes darker and darker, Released Time Bible Education becomes more and more important.  We are now reaching out to a generation of children who have no compass for right and wrong and are Biblically illiterate…a generation that is unchurched yet hungers for answers.  Now more than ever our public schools are ripe for harvest as a mission field and Released Time fills that need.

Finn Laursen, Executive Director of large teachers’ association